President Christ recently added another honor to the many she has received during her Smith tenure. Christ this week was presented with the Hennessey Award, which is given annually by the United Way of Hampshire County to an individual who, through exemplary leadership, service and dedication, made the greatest impact on the current campaign.
Christ has consistently been both a generous contributor to the United Way through the annual Smith United Way campaign, and a leader in her support of the local United Way. Smith has long been among the leading institutional contributors to the United Way’s annual LIVE UNITED campaign, accounting for more than 10 percent (more than $150,000 a year) of the drive’s total, which this year exceeds $1.2 million. During the course of Christ’s presidency, Smith has contributed $1.83 million to United Way of Hampshire County.
Christ accepted the Hennessey Award on behalf of the Smith community during the United Way campaign year-end luncheon celebration on May 29 at the Hotel Northampton. Several current and former Smith United Way campaign volunteers attended the event.
“The United Way is deeply grateful for President Christ’s institutional and personal leadership within the United Way campaign,” said Peter Jessop, co-chair of this year’s United Way LIVE UNITED campaign, in presenting the award. “President Christ’s membership in the United Way’s Leaders Circle as well as its Alexis de Tocqueville Society through her loyal and generous giving expresses a confidence in the United Way that inspires others both within Smith College and among the larger community to follow her lead.”
Jessop also cited Christ’s ongoing support of and involvement with the local community. “Her championship of Smith College’s community development efforts in the area of civic engagement, affordable housing, sustainability, community service and leadership, and historic preservation, has also helped to ensure optimal success for our Hampshire County community.”
President Christ was also honored recently with an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and with a special reception celebrating her contributions to Northampton, Hampshire County and the Pioneer Valley, hosted by the Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce, the Hampshire County Regional Tourism Council and the Hampshire Regional Chamber of Commerce.